The South Dakota Dept. of Public Safety sends non-response to Eric Sage. Sage tries to understand.

Scroll down the page to read these documents.

Dept. of Public Safety Secretary Tom Dravland responds to 
Eric Sage's complaint of Jan. 25 2008.

Eric Sage replies to "Tom".

Supporting Documents sent with complaints...

The Complaint Narrative

"Chewing and Grinding"

The tickets written by HP Trautman and DSA Nelson

List of Expenses incurred by the victim, Eric Sage

       Eric replies...

Eric Sage
Sidney NE 69162

February 22, 2008

Tom Dravland, Secretary
South Dakota Department of Public Safety
118 West Capitol Avenue
Pierre SD 57501

Dear Tom,

I guess we’re on a first-name basis, now, huh? Well, allow me to paraphrase the letter you sent me in response to my complaint against Trooper Dave Trautman. Just so we know we understand each other.

I have received your letter regarding your Aug. 7, 2007, arrest. I am not particularly appreciative that you shared your concerns.

When we receive complaints about the actions of our troopers, we look into the complaint and take appropriate action. Most generally, as in this case, this means a letter to the complaining party saying, “Screw you.”

I would like to respond to a couple issues raised in your complaint. Your arrest occurred during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, not to mention 19 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall. For that entire period, and even before then, the Highway Patrol’s focus has been to be on the road, handing out tickets like popcorn, indicting everyone in sight when they see a violation.

I did note that your letter comes nearly six months after your arrest, two months after your last scheduled court date, eight years after the election of Geo. W. Bush to the presidency, 26 years after the space shuttle Challenger blew up, and over 230 years after the founding of the United States. Your letter probably came after some other stuff too.

After writing a ticket, the trooper turns the case over to the state’s attorney, who makes decisions based on the trooper’s credibility. When a trooper makes ludicrous accusations, the state’s attorney pretty much listens. The Highway Patrol’s involvement then is limited to telling the truth as the state’s attorney says it is.

As for your expenses related to the arrest, frankly, I don’t give a damn. You shouldn’t be out on the road if you can’t take a frivolous possession ticket every so often.

Our job is to write tickets, not to decide whether writing the ticket is warranted by the evidence.

Did I understand what you said correctly, Tom? Please advise me if not. You might also take the time to respond to the points in my original complaint.

Very truly yours,

Eric Sage


Return to Eric Sage's complaints to various state offices